By Steve Goldstein, MarketWatch
Downbeat results from HSBC Holdings couldn't prevent European stocks from reaching a new multi-month high, as earnings season on both sides of the ocean has been greeted warmly.
After trading in negative territory through much of the day, the Stoxx Europe 600 ended with a gain of 0.33% to 399.34, the best level since Jan. 29, 2018.
Machinery stocks including ASML Holding and Sandvik rose.
The German DAX rose 0.49% to 12957.26, the French CAC 40 increased 0.28% to 5738.40 and the U.K. FTSE 100 rose 0.19% to 7338.15.
In London, advancers outnumbered decliners 1547 to 1023, while on the Xetra in Germany, gainers beat decliners 377 to 233.
In a week that will feature a huge number of U.S. earnings, a Federal Reserve interest-rate decision and nonfarm payrolls data, markets also were underpinned by relief that the European Union granted a three-month extension to Brexit.
HSBC shares fell 3.8% as the company said it can longer hit next year's target of an 11% return on tangible equity. The bank's profit tumbled 24% in the third quarter on what it called challenging conditions .
While HSBC has struggled after reporting earnings, 76 of the European companies that had released financial results for the third quarter through to Friday reported to the upside by 1.8%, according to Goldman Sachs. "We are still early in the season but it is encouraging amid the economic slowdown," said strategists at the investment bank.
Shares in LVMH Moet Hennessy (MC.FR), the luxury goods company, ended 0.5% lower in the first reaction to the news it may buy jewelry icon Tiffany .
Analysts at Equita said increasing that offer by another 10% would imply 0.5% value destruction, "acceptable in our view considering the strategic opportunity of the deal and the further growth potential LVMH could add to Tiffany," the broker said.